In a statement today, former Loughborough athlete Paula Radcliffe has expressed her profound disappointment at not being able to take part in the London 2012 Olympic Games.
"It is hard to know that had the Olympics been six weeks earlier I could have gone out there and run confidently knowing that I was in the best shape I had been in for a while, but I am by no means the first to experience something like this.
"No-one tells us in advance where the limits of our own bodies lie, and pushing these limits is the only way we can ever achieve our highest goals and dreams.
"However hard today is, finally closing the door on that dream, at least I can know that I truly have tried absolutely everything.
"As desperate as I was to be part of the amazing experience of the London Olympics, I don't want to be there below my best. If I can't be there and give it my best, then I would rather someone else who can do that is able to be there.
"I have been through the mill emotionally and physically the past three weeks, cried more tears than ever, vented more frustration and at the same time calmly tried every direction and avenue available to heal myself.
"Now is the time to rest totally, give my body chance to recover and assess calmly what can be done and where I go from here."
Ethiopian athlete Haile Gebrselassie beat Loughborough’s Paula Radcliffe in a half-marathon challenge at the Vienna city marathon today.
38-year-old Radcliffe, who had started with a 7min 52sec lead on Gebrselassie finished in 1hr 12:03 – almost 12 minutes after the two-time 10,000m Olympic gold medallist. Radcliffe’s best half-marathon time is 1:06:47.
She blamed a recent illness for what she saw as a poor result.
"It didn't go well for me, I already didn't feel well after the sixth or seventh kilometre but... I really wanted to finish, even though it wasn't such a good time," she said in German, which she studied at university.
"I hoped Haile would overtake me in the 20th, or the 19th kilometre but it was earlier than that. I'm sorry I couldn't give more today."
Radcliffe said she was still on antibiotics after a bout of bronchitis in recent weeks, "but that should maybe take off one minute, not two or three."
Close to 36,000 runners from over 110 nations took part in the Vienna race this year, according to organisers.